Jews for Jihad? Hillel does interfaith with the Hamas linked Muslim Student Association
March 27, 2008
An article entitled" University Of Pennsylvania Hillel Conducts Interfaith Hoax With Radical Muslim Student Association warned that:
" Since the Muslim Student Association is an integral part of the Saudi-funded Wahhabist power structure, this interfaith trip can't be anything but a da'wa exercise by the group, a call to convert the Jewish students." http://www.pipelinenews.org/index.cfm?page=msa11.19.07.htm
According to one news report:
"The trip was a collaboration between Hillel and the Muslim Students Association with the dual purpose of serving the community and strengthening the relationship between the two faiths, explained College senior Naveed Rashid, [Social Development Chair of the MSA] a participant . It was sponsored by a $17,000 grant from the Fox Leadership program which aims whose mission"is to enrich the 21st century Penn undergraduate educational experience in ways that excite and equip students for present and future leadership roles in whatever realms of human excellence and endeavor may call them.http://www.sas.upenn.edu/foxleadership/reg/index.php
The students worked with a community-service program called Acorn, similar to Habitat for Humanity, College and Wharton sophomore Sakina Zaidi. [The UPenn MSA treasurer ]http://media.www.dailypennsylvanian.com/media/storage/paper882/news/2008/03/19/News/Religion.And.Rebuilding.Down.South-3274479.shtml
With the trip now a fait accompli the extent of the da'wa was revealed by non other than Samir Malik the head of the Muslim Student Association at U Penn who gushed to a paper that :
"But the excursion was more than just a community-service trip. The students also took part in a variety of interfaith dialogues. ..
College and Wharton senior Samir Malik, a student organizer, [president of the MSA at UPenn] said that forced dialogue was "something I wanted to stay away from." Instead, in each session the students were given a prompt, but "from there they took it to all kinds of different tangents."
Along with other controversial topics, the group discussed their religious identities and backgrounds, morally troubling passages from the Koran and the Old Testament and the influence of mass media on religion.
On Friday, the group attended both Muslim and Shabbat services. Malik explained that while watching the Jewish services, MSA students found out how similar the two services were.
But it wasn't all work and no play. The participants watched a documentary about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, went on a riverboat cruise, went out to dinners and to a jazz club and walked around New Orleans.
All involved agreed that the trip was a huge success."
Especially from the point of view of the stealth jihadists from the Muslim Brotherhood.
Muslim Brotherhood operatives saw that the work of undermining the U.S. could be best accomplished by the use of front groups such as the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) and the Muslim Students Association. But while CAIR was designed to work in the legal-cultural realm, posturing as another of the minority rights groups functioning in the public square, the MSA's role was to be restricted to college campuses, where it would advance the cause of radical Islam and lead the effort to stigmatize Israel. http://frontpagemagazine.com/Articles/Read.aspx?GUID=4066F0B8-C173-4A7C-B43C-99988EC9F154
The trip was indeed a huge success for the da'wa enterprise and is another example of Hillel subverting their own and Jewish interests by participating with a group linked to the Muslim Brotherhood.
|Penn students Lauren Hurwitz (top), Samir Malik (left) and Salah Chafik help clean out an abandoned home in New Orleans' 9th Ward.|
At the same time, the Brooklyn-born Modern Orthodox student had been working to improve ties between Penn's sizable Jewish and Muslim communities, and was developing a friendship with Samir Malik, a former president of the campus' Muslim Students Association.
The two came up with an idea: Send a group of Jewish and Muslim students from Penn to New Orleans to help in the ongoing rebuilding efforts. They got both Hillel and the MSA to sign on.
On March 12, a group of 22 students -- 11 Jews and 11 Muslims -- returned from the Big Easy after a six-day trip sponsored by Penn's Fox Leadership Program. All in all, Penn sent 100 students, representing groups including the Campus Crusade for Christ, the Newman Center and the School of Design, though the Jewish-Muslim trip was largely an independent project.
"You can't expect 25 students to rebuild an entire city in six days. But you can demonstrate your commitment and use community service to hit on the fundamental service element of both religions," said Malik, 22, a management and neuroscience major originally from St. Louis. A first-generation American, he is the child of Pakistani immigrants.
Through the auspices of an organization called ACORN, or the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now, the students spent several days volunteering in the Lower 9th Ward, the area hardest hit by Hurricane Katrina in 2005.
In addition to the volunteer efforts, the trip was also about interfaith exploration and dialogue, and included intense and at times heated dialogue on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. A Hillel rabbi, a university chaplain and a Muslim professor chaperoned the trip and led the discussions.
Malik added that, in the past, Hillel and the MSA have worked to reduce tensions when, for example, a controversial speaker came to campus or a troubling issue cropped up, like when the groups pushed to have Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week, renamed Terrorism Awareness Week, a more amenable moniker for many Muslim students.
Sakina Zaidi, a 19-year-old native of Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates, had virtually no interaction with Jews before arriving at Penn. Zaidi, who wears a head scarf but described herself as religiously liberal, recalled being moved by a visit to Anshe Sfard Synagogue, an Orthodox shul in the city's Garden District, during Friday-night services.
"I have never been to a synagogue, but it was the most beautiful experience," she said. "I definitely felt a connection -- that there are different ways of praying to the same God.
"Having this project, where everybody was really motivated to try and make a difference, it added a whole new level to interfaith dialogue," said Zaidi, "and it brought us together despite our differences."
Bios of MSA students mentioned in the first article above:
2007 Board MSA .
( The MSA website list of links includes one to Islamic Awakening an Al Qaeda website promoting jihad and many other radical Islamist websites.)
Hometown: St. Louis
Major: Management & Neuroscience Salaam all! So my story goes like this: Born in St. Louis and lived there my entire life. Islam was always a part of my life, but it was not front and center until 9/11. Whether I wanted the responsibilty or not, I was a representative for Islam to all my non-Muslim friends. Being such, I took it upon myself to really learn the religion and became very much involved with everything Islam. Above everything else, I am here because I love the people.
Naveed RashidSocial Development Chair Hometown: Atlanta Major: Political Science & Psychology Salaams everyone - I am a Political Science major from Atlanta, Georgia. I love playing ultimate frisbee and basketball and enjoy good humor. My favorite part about Penn is definitely the diversity of the students. The MSA at Penn has been great because it has offered a whole host of spiritual, educational and social resources that have made my experience at Penn all the more exciting.
Sakina ZaidiTreasurer Hometown: Abu Dhabi, UAE Major: SAS-ySalaam all! I just finished my freshman year at Penn and honesty feel that the MSA has become my family away from home. I've lived my whole life in Abu Dhabi, right on the equator and had to get used to a lot of things other than just the weather in Philly. The MSA definitely provided me with a great cause, a friendly community and a crazy good time. From praying in the library during finals to skiing in the Pokonos in the Winter, the MSA is a great blend of faith and fun. In my opinion, we are all ambassadors of Islam and this is a great opportunity to leave our mark on anyone and everyone we meet.
|The Muslim Students Association and the Jihad Network|
The following essay, adapted from the Introduction to this booklet, shows how, as early as the 1980s, operatives from the Muslim Brotherhood, parent group for al Qaeda and Hamas, formulated a blueprint for a "jihadist process" that would ultimately sabotage the "miserable house" of the United States. These Muslim Brotherhood operatives saw that the work of undermining the U.S. could be best accomplished by the use of front groups such as the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) and the Muslim Students Association. But while CAIR was designed to work in the legal-cultural realm, posturing as another of the minority rights groups functioning in the public square, the MSA's role was to be restricted to college campuses, where it would advance the cause of radical Islam and lead the effort to stigmatize Israel.
Over the next several days, Front Page will publish profiles of individual chapters of the MSA on a variety of campuses around the country, showing how specifically they achieve the broad goals of the organization. – The Editors
As revealed in documents seized by the FBI and entered as evidence in a Texas court, the Muslim Students Association is a legacy project of the Muslim Brotherhood. The Brotherhood is an organization formed by a Hitler-admiring Muslim named Hasan al-Bannain Egypt in 1928. It was designed to function as the spearpoint of the Islamo-fascist movement and its crusade against the West.
The Brotherhood spawned al-Qaeda and Hamas. Its doctrines make up the core of the terrorist jihad conducted by organizations such as Islamic Jihad, Hezbollah, Hamas and the government of Iran. Its agendas have been clear since its creation: infiltration, subversion and global terror with world conquest as the goal.
…To establish one Islamic state of united Islamic countries, one nation under one leadership whose mission will be to reinforce adherence to the law of Allah...and the strengthening of the Islamic presence in the world arena....The goal...is the establishment of a world Islamic state.
The first target was the "near enemy" – the Arab states that al-Banna and his followers felt had betrayed Islam. The United States – the "far enemy" – would not become a specific focus of the Brotherhood until many years later.
The organization's aspirations for world dominion seemed like a fantasy until the Iranian revolution of 1979. But that event showed the jihadists that they could conquer and govern a state and use it as a base for Islamic revolution elsewhere. There was no doubt who the enemy was. The Iranian leader Ayatollah Khomeni coined the phrase "Great Satan" and "Little Satan" to demonize the United States and Israel and mark them for destruction.
"Destroying Western Civilization From Within"
A formal plan for targeting America was devised three years after the Iranian revolution, in 1982.. The plan was summarized in a 1991 memorandum written by Mohamed Akram, an operative of the Muslim Brotherhood. "The process of settlement" of Muslims in America, Akram explained, "is a ‘Civilization-Jihadist Process.'" This means that members of the Brotherhood "must understand that their work in America is a kind of grand jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and ‘sabotaging' its miserable house by their hands and the hands of the believers so that it is eliminated and God's religion is made victorious over all other religions."
This memo surfaced in a Texas courtroom in the fall of 2007 after prosecutors introduced it as evidence in the trial of the Holy Land Foundation, once the largest Islamic charity in the United States. The HLF was charged with funneling charitable donations to the jihad terrorists of the Islamic Resistance Movement, or Hamas, a Brotherhood organization that now controls the Gaza Strip. But the implications of this document go far beyond the Holy Land Foundation.
It is actually a blueprint for the subversion of American society, and the eventual imposition of Islamic law in the United States. This would mean an institutionalized oppression of women, homosexuals, and religious minorities; the end of freedom of speech and the freedom of conscience; and the replacement of democracy by theocracy.
U.S. authorities had been keeping an eye on Brotherhood operatives even before the memo surfaced. In 2001, U.S. officials accused Youssef Nada, a member of the organization, of funding terrorism. Two years later, American investigators described Soliman Biheiri, a businessman in Virginia, as the Brotherhood's U.S. "financial toehold."
Surveying the Islamic organizations that existed in the U.S. in 1991, Mohamed Akram declared in his memo: "The big challenge that is ahead of us is how to turn these seeds or ‘scattered' elements into comprehensive, stable, ‘settled' organizations that are connected with our Movement and which fly in our orbit and take orders from our guidance."
At the end of the document, Akram provided "a list of our organizations and the organizations of our friends" – apparently, those whom he believed were likewise dedicated to this great project of sabotaging the "miserable house" of American society. Surveying all these groups filled him with enthusiasm: "Imagine if they all march according to one plan!!!"
Akram contemplated a network of many overlapping groups, with personnel that move from one to the other and hold positions in different organizations simultaneously—an arrangement that resembles the Communist Party's creation of interlocking front groups during the Cold War and complicates the task of understanding and tracking the pattern of their activities.
The organizations Akram saw as advancing the Islamo-Fascist movement in America included, among many others, the Islamic Society of North America, the North American Islamic Trust, the Islamic Circle of North America, the International Institute for Islamic Thought, and the Islamic Association for Palestine – from which came the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR) three years later. But perhaps the most important of these groups in terms of the long term infiltration and conquest the Brotherhood envisioned was The Muslim Students Association (MSA).
The Stealth Jihad of the MSA
Established in January 1963 at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, the Muslim Students Association of the United States and Canada, or MSA (also known as MSA National) currently has chapters on nearly 600 college campuses across North America.) The relationship between MSA National and the individual university chapters is not a fixed hierarchy, but rather a loose connection. Thus the policies and views of the national organization may differ from those of some of the local chapters.) Stating that its mission is "to serve the best interest of Islam and Muslims in the United States and Canada so as to enable them to practice Islam as a complete way of life,"MSA is by far the most influential Islamic student organization in North America.
Founded by members of the Muslim Brotherhood, MSA was named in Mohammed Akram's 1991 memorandum as one of the Brotherhood's likeminded "organizations of our friends" who shared the common goal of destroying America and turning it into a Muslim nation. These "friends" were described by the Brotherhood as groups that could help teach Muslims "that their work in America is a kind of grand jihad in eliminating and destroying the Western civilization from within and ‘sabotaging' its miserable house by their hands ... so that ... God's religion Islam is made victorious over all other religions."
From its inception, MSA had close links with the extremist Muslim World League, whose chapters' websites have featured not only Osama bin Laden's propaganda, but also publicity-recruiting campaigns for Wahhabi involvement with the Chechen insurgents in Russia. According to author and Islam expert Stephen Schwartz, MSA is a key lobbying organization for the Wahhabi sect of Islam.
MSA solicited donations for the Holy Land Foundation for Relief and Development, whose assets the U.S. government seized in December 2001 because that organization was giving financial support to the terrorist group Hamas. MSA also has strong ties to the World Assembly of Muslim Youth.
Charging that U.S. foreign policy is driven by militaristic imperialism, MSA steadfastly opposes the American military incursions into both Afghanistan and Iraq. The organization also follows the Arab propaganda line in the Middle East conflict and has condemned the anti-terrorist security fence that Israel has built in the West Bank as an illegal "apartheid wall" that violates the civil and human rights of Palestinians.
An influential member of the International ANSWER steering committee, MSA maintains a large presence at ANSWER-sponsored anti-war demonstrations. The pro-North Korea, pro-Saddam Hussein ANSWER is a front organization of the Marxist-Leninist Workers World Party.
Local chapters of MSA signed a February 20, 2002 document, composed by the radical group Refuse & Resist (a creation of the Revolutionary Communist Party's) condemning military tribunals and the detention of immigrants apprehended in connection with post-9/11 terrorism investigations. The document read, in part: "They the U.S. government are coming for the Arab, Muslim and South Asian immigrants. … The recent ‘disappearances,' indefinite detention, the round-ups, the secret military tribunals, the denial of legal representation, evidence kept a secret from the accused, the denial of any due process for Arab, Muslim, South Asians and others, have chilling similarities to a police state."
MSA has strongly opposed the Patriot Act, which it describes as an "infamous" piece of legislation. The organization's chapters across the United States have similarly denounced virtually every other national security initiative implemented by the U.S. government since the 9/11 attacks.
MSA chose not to endorse or participate in the May 14, 2005 "Free Muslims March Against Terror," an event whose stated purpose was to "send a message to the terrorists and extremists that their days are numbered ... and to send a message to the people of the Middle East, the Muslim world and all people who seek freedom, democracy and peaceful coexistence that we support them."
But while it is possible to understand its political orientation from some of the positions it has taken on large national issues, the Muslim Students Association comes into sharper focus in the actions of the individual chapters that do its work every day on campuses across America. The following analysis of 18 separate campus chapters of MSA will make this clear.
21 http://old.thedeadhand.com/blogs/jscroft/archive /2005/04/18/1356.asp
MIM: For more on the MSA's origins see:
MSA = Muslim Students of Allah - "Islam in Motion" conference targets New York City 3/25-26/05
MIM: The MSA mission statement:
MSA National serves Muslim students during their college and university careers by facilitating their efforts to establish, maintain, and develop chapters of Muslim Student Associations, Unions, Organizations, and Islamic Societies. Emphasis is placed on the learning and well-being of the individual Muslim student, as well as networking and growth of the chapter through sponsorship of educational programs, camps, zonal and annual conferences, and worker training programs. MSA National works with all organizations whose agenda includes a special focus on students and issues of concern to them during their college career. MSA National strives to inform and mobilize students to respond to crises around North America and the world.
Get involved today with MSA National at the local, regional, zonal or national levels!
WHAT IS MSA NATIONAL?
MSA National is a student movement, providing a broad platform for Muslim students of all diverse backgrounds for the past four decades. On January 1st, 1963, about 75 Muslim students, representing nearly 10 campus organizations, met at the Urbana-Champaign campus of the University of Illinois to consider coordinating their efforts. The result was an organization known as the Muslim Students Association of the US & Canada or more commonly known as MSA National. MSA National's broad goals are to:
Many current national leaders, speakers, and scholars have built this organization and credit part of their training to MSA National.
Geographically, MSA National has divided the US and Canada as such: East Zone USA, Central Zone USA, West Zone USA, East Zone Canada and West Zone Canada. Each zone has a Zonal Representative who is assisted in his/her work by the Zonal Committee, which is composed of regional representatives. The Zonal Representative speaks and acts on behalf of his/her zone in the MSA Executive Committee. The zones are as following:
East Zone USA includes the states of Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Virgin Island, Virginia, and West Virginia.
Central Zone USA includes the states of Arkansas, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, and Wisconsin.
West Zone USA includes the states of Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.
East Zone Canada includes the provinces of New Brunswick, New Found land, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, and Quebec,
West Zone Canada includes the provinces of Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, and Saskatchewan.
WHAT ARE THE GUIDING PRINCIPLES OF MSA?
The Muslim Students Association members are guided by the following principles, which emanate from the Qur'an and the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad:
Sincerity is the foundation of our existence.
Knowledge precedes our actions.
Humility guides our conduct.
Truthfulness is the mark of our speech.
Moderation is the compass of our journey.
Tolerance is the banner of our outreach.
Forgiveness precedes our reconciliatory efforts.
Patience is the hallmark of our planning.
Gratitude binds our hearts together.
IS MSA NATIONAL A PART OF ISNA?
In 1983, MSA National gave birth to the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), to be the umbrella of Islamic organizations that sprang from MSA in North America. MSA National maintains continuous affiliation with ISNA. As an affiliate of ISNA, historically, the MSA National President has a seat on the ISNA Majlis Ash-shura. However, beyond this, ISNA does not have any direct involvement in MSA National affairs. In addition, the MSA Annual Continental Conference is held alongside ISNA because it is cost-effective for students to attend with their families and for MSA National to benefit from ISNA's negotiations for hotel/conference rooms. A students-only summer convention is currently being explored.
HOW IS MSA NATIONAL FUNDED?
MSA-National is a non-profit, 501(c) (4), tax-exempt organization that finances itself mainly by fundraising activities. We do not receive funding from overseas governments. We do not accept funding from any one source that might potentially seek control of MSA National's agenda or affairs. The Finance Task Force is charged with generating creative fundraising ideas. If you have fundraising experience and/or can contribute to this task force, please contact: email@example.com We welcome your tax-deductible contributions and qualify as a recipient of sadaqah/zakah donations. Both you and your parents can strengthen MSA National with your donations!
HOW CAN WE START AN MSA CHAPTER?
To start a Muslim student organization on your campus, you would have to find out the go to the student affairs office or the administrative offices that deal with student affairs and ask them the procedures. Next, you will have to formulate a constitution for your organization. Your zonal representative can help you reach other chapters and request sample constitutions. Collect names of Muslim students so you can present the list to the student council or the administration as evidence of the number of students who would actually benefit from having a an official MSA on campus. Try to also get a preliminary list of officers and choose an organizational structure to be presented to the student council/administration. You can always hold official elections once the MSA has been registered as a student organization on campus.
For more information starting or improving your MSA, click here to view the MSA National Chapter Starter's Guide.
For general MSA help, contact your Zonal Rep.
DOES OUR CHAPTER HAVE TO USE THE NAME "MSA?" TO BE AFFILIATED?
All Muslim student organizations are welcome to benefit from and contribute to the brotherhood and sisterhood that is MSA National. For uniformity, most chapters are called MSA, however, we welcome existing names such as Muslim Student Union, Muslim Student Organization, Islamic Society, or any such derivations as long as the general principles governing the chapter adhere to the Qur'an and the Sunnah. Don't be left out. Join MSA National today!
WHY SHOULD MY MSA CHAPTER AFFILIATE?
By affiliating, the chapters stand to strengthen MSA National and the student movement. MSA National is adamant about not micromanaging work at the chapter level, thus assuring each chapter its independence. There are two ways you can look at the advantages of joining this body of Muslim student organizations from all over North America:
WHAT RESOURCES DOES MSA NATIONAL PROVIDE?
MSA National can provide many resources for a local MSA chapter. These include:
and much more...
Contact your zonal representative for more information.
WHAT IS MSA NATIONAL'S ORGANIZATIONAL STRUCTURE?
The MSA conducts its activities through its Executive Committee, which is elected by affiliated MSA chapters on an annual basis.
The executive committee consists of the President, two Vice Presidents (US & Canada), the Ex-officio, the Treasurer and one Zonal representative from each of the five zones.
In addition to this, there are many task forces that work on specific MSA projects.
HOW CAN I CONTRIBUTE?
Under the restructuring plan being proposed, you, the individual Muslim student will be able to become a member of MSA National. We will still have affiliated chapters, but every Muslim student will have the opportunity to learn, benefit from, and contribute to the student movement that is MSA National. In addition, if you are looking to put your MSA experience and skills to work at the national level, then the MSA National Task Forces are a great place to start! Currently, MSA National has the following task forces:
For an introduction to each task force and the different projects they are involved in, please visit: http://www.msanational.org/ or contact your zonal representative.
In addition, MSA National also develops new task forces as the needs arise. Past examples are the Jerusalem Task Force, and the Iraq Task Force (which joined the Free Iraq Foundation). We have also helped form the Student Alliance for Imam Jamil Al-Amin (SAIJ).
The largest Jewish campus organization in the world, Hillel: The Foundation for Jewish Campus Life provides opportunities for Jewish students at more than 500 colleges and universities to explore and celebrate their Jewish identity through its global network of regional centers, campus Foundations and Hillel student organizations. Hillel is working to provoke a renaissance of Jewish life.
Hillel's mission is to enrich the lives of Jewish undergraduate and graduate students so that they may enrich the Jewish people and the world. Hillel student leaders, professionals and lay leaders are dedicated to creating a pluralistic, welcoming and inclusive environment for Jewish college students, where they are encouraged to grow intellectually, spiritually and socially. Hillel helps students find a balance in being distinctively Jewish and universally human by encouraging them to pursue tzedek (social justice), tikkun olam (repairing the world) and Jewish learning, and to support Israel and global Jewish peoplehood. Hillel is committed to excellence, innovation, accountability and results.
MIM: Berkeley Hillel works together with Hatem Bazian. At a rally in 2004:
Bazian ungrammatically declared to a crowd of protestors, "we're sitting here and watching the world pass by, people being bombed, and it's about time that we have an intifada in this country that change fundamentally the political dynamics in here."
Bazian concluded with a promise of more violence to come: "They're gonna say, ‘some Palestinian being too radical' — well, you haven't seen radicalism yet!"[i]
For more on Hatem Bazian see:" American Intifada" by Dr.Daniel Pipes
File Format: PDF/Adobe Acrobat - View as HTML
MIM: An announcement for an upcoming event from the MSA and Hillel at Columbia U.
MODERN WOMEN OF FAITH
Brought to you by CU-MSA and Hillel/Yavneh, 'Modern of Women of Faith'
tackle a diverse array of issues that many Jewish and Muslim mothers,
daughters, wives, sisters and friends struggle with consistently. What
mean to be a religious woman and yet, at the same time lead a balanced
This balance is profound. It is a balance of mind, body and soul. As
and young spiritual women of tomorrow, how will we choose to live our
Come listen to Professor Greenberg-Kobrin and Dr. Abeer Hassoun as they
their knowledge and wisdom of this hotly debated topic.
The evening will commence with dinner, followed by speeches, and
discussions amongst friends.
Please RSVP by sending and email to firstname.lastname@example.org to
DATE: Tuesday, April 1st
TIME: 7 PM to 9 PM
PLACE: Brooks Hall, Barnard College
MIM: A recent announcement from the University of North Carolina about an interfaith Arts Fest.
2. 4th Annual Jewish Muslim Arts Fest is here!!!
Are you an artist? Want to express yourself? The 4th AnnualJewish-Muslim Arts Fest is looking for performances, poetry, spoken
word, and visual art incorporating the theme of "community." On April 17, 2008, North Carolina Hillel and the UNC Muslim Students Association invite students to express how "LIVING TOGETHER IS AN ART" between Jewish and Muslim communities. Please email email@example.com if interested. The deadline for submissions is March 28, 2008. For visual art submissions, please send a picture of your artwork. Call backs for performances will be held the week of March 31.
MIM: An excerpt from an article in U Penn's "The Daily Pennslyvanian" showing Hillel support for Muslims protesting the Danish cartoons.
The publication of the cartoons in the University of North Carolina's The Daily Tar Heel and Harvard University's Salient, a conservative magazine, have elicited debates and demands for apologies.
Last week, the dispute hit Philadelphia.
On Friday, Drexel University's The Triangle published a staff editorial about the cartoons. However, they did not print the drawings after Muslims from Drexel, Penn and the Philadelphia area pressured Triangle staff not to include them in the editorial.
And 500 people protested in front of the offices of The Philadelphia Inquirer on Saturday for re-publishing the drawings as part of its coverage of the issue.
Yet, the controversy has not stirred this campus in the same way.
This is because students at Penn constructively talked to each other instead of fighting.
Khalid Usmani, the president of the Penn Muslim Students Association, described the Danish cartoons as "very disrespectful to the religion [of] any Muslim."
Backing him up was Hillel President Jenna Statfeld, who described the drawings as "incredibly offensive."
Sitting together at Hillel, Statfeld and Usmani proceeded to list a variety of joint Hillel/MSA events, such as interfaith prayer sessions and a seminar on the religious implications of organ donation.
"We have a very positive relationship," Statfeld said. "For us, this [cartoon controversy] is very foreign and it's unfortunate that this is what the world is seeing, as opposed to the stuff that goes on at a campus like ours."
MIM:Hillel and the MSA are working together at Louisiana State University to get a kosher/halal cafeteria.
Jews, Muslims need dining options
Hillel, MSA to work together
By: Shirien Elmasraya
As many know, Muslims and Jews have requirements when it comes to their diet.
Both groups cannot eat anything from swine, and our animals must be slaughtered in a certain way.
Allah tells Muslims in the Qur'an, "He has forbidden you only the Maytatah (dead animals), and blood, and the flesh of swine, and that which is slaughtered as a sacrifice for others than Allah (or has been slaughtered for idols, etc., on which Allah's Name has not been mentioned while slaughtering). But if one is forced by necessity without willful disobedience nor transgressing due limits, then there is no sin on him. Truly, Allah is Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful."
Both religions consider pork specifically to be impure. But both Muslims and Jews follow these specifications simply because God told us to do so. It was revealed both in the Torah and the Qur'an.
Another common ground that Muslims and Jews share is that both their religions require the blood be drained out of the meat before eating it. We also cannot eat animals that died before being slaughtered.
The method of slaughter is pretty much the same as it requires a quick, deep stroke across the throat with a perfectly sharp blade with no nicks or unevenness.
This method is painless, causes unconsciousness within a few seconds, and many consider it to be the most humane method of slaughter possible. Many other slaughtering methods these days - such causing animals to die of electric shock - have proven to be torturous to the animals.
Skittles, Starbursts and marshmallows are among the many foods I had previously enjoyed eating before I found out they contain gelatin, which comes from pigs and other animals most of the time.
We also have to often request that the workers who make and serve food at restaurants not use the same utensils or cook in the same oil or pan that had previously been occupied with sausage, bacon or any other pig-related food.
Having a kosher or halal option in the food court would demonstrate a great deal of respect and acceptance of this University towards diverse religions on this campus.
There are many Muslims and Jews at the University, and the facility would surely be used to its greatest potential. There aren't many options in the city - or the state for that matter - to have a kosher menu option.
This would perhaps entail a separate area to cook meats that were slaughtered according to Shariah and Jewish laws.
The Muslim Students Association and Hillel will soon work together to request this option in the Student Union. Haitham Sohl, MSA president, also indicated that they will be working to get a vegetarian option as well.
Our University should set standards for others. We have many nationalities and religions on this campus, which make it imperative that we seek to accommodate them to the best of our ability.
By adding a plan like this to our campus, it would make the University very appealing to those on the college search and show a desire for acceptance and diversity.
Contact Shirien Elmasraya at
www.alhudapk.com (Urdu lectures)
Formal Islamic Education:
(Accredited by Islamic Universities in Sudan and Malaysia)
(Founded by Dr. Abu Ameenah Bilal Philips)
(Founded by Sheikh Muhammed AlShareef)
Islamic bookstores (cheap and reliable):